Starkickers an inspiration

FUN and fitness will be the theme when a small army of kids from all abilities run onto East Fremantle Oval tomorrow (Sunday May 8) as members of the blue and white East Fremantle Starkick team. 

Coach Steve Flanagan said the Auskick program which has the motto “If you want to play, we will find a way” teaches children of different abilities aged 5-12 Aussie rules skills. 

“We accept all kids of that age with any disability they have got, we include them in a team environment,” Mr Flanagan said. 

With up to 15 kids turning up for any game depending on hospital visits Mr Flanagan said it “gives the family an option for the kids to join in a team environment with similar kids” focusing on coordination, balancing and basic football skills. 

His 11 year old daughter Jaclyn has been playing for the past four years with a rare condition called mosaic trisomy 12.

Introduced by primary school Christ the King the mad keen Carlton supporter Jaclyn “loves it,” said Mr Flanagan.

“It is just uplifting to be able to go there for the hour and see all these kids being able to smile with no disappointment or whinging they all just have a great time and love having ago,” he said. 

With children “in wheelchairs, callipers and all different conditions just having a go” Mr Flannigan said he wants to spread this “positive message” out to the community. 

Notre Dame University has already stepped on board by providing volunteers.

Launched by the Coolbinia Bomber’s Junior Football Club in 2015 Starkick has since spread to various Auskick clubs around the metropolitan area.

Tomorrow’s game starts at 8.30am at East Fremantle Oval. Mr Flanagan a Fremantle police officer in his day job says he sees a lot of negative behaviour during the week and reckons the kids’ positive vibe could rub off on the community. 

For more information visit the Fremantle Junior Football Club website. 

by KAISHA WIHONGI

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